Murder – Not Guilty By Reason of Mental Impairment

knife-stabThe accused was a 30 year old with a history of chronic paranoid schizophrenia, charged with the murder of his father. Some weeks prior to the murder he had ceased taking his medication and was suffering from an acute episode of psychosis which included visual, auditory and tactile hallucinations; he believed that voices were telling him to kill his father and that he was doing God’s work. Suffering under these hallucinations, he attended his father’s home and stabbed him more than 70 times, killing him. Upon his arrest he was transferred to Thomas Embling Hospital for treatment and remained there on remand, pending his trial.

We represented the client who was charged with Murder.

Following his trial in the Supreme Court, where evidence was given by his treating psychiatrists, the Court directed that a ruling of ‘not guilty by reason of mental impairment’ be recorded.

The Judge made an order that the accused be placed on a custodial supervision order under the care of the Victorian Institute of Forensic Mental health for a nominal period of 25 years, whereby he could continue to receive treatment before being released.


DISCLAIMER: This is a real case study of an actual case from our files. Details pertaining to the client have been changed to protect their privacy. The sentence imposed and the charge have not been altered. These case studies are published to demonstrate real outcomes and give an indication of possible tariffs in Court. We do not guarantee a similar case on these charges will get the same result. Please note that we post results at our discretion, therefore while many case studies are average results, others are notable for their exceptional outcomes. PUBLISHED 25/02/2013